White Americans are very good at avoiding the subject of race. “I don’t see color—I treat everyone equally” is a common way to dismiss complaints about white privilege and systematic bias.
New research reveals a large and growing group of fellow citizens are uniquely placed to break through this barrier to meaningful discussion: biracial individuals.
It finds American whites are more likely to acknowledge race as significant if they have been exposed to people from mixed-race backgrounds.
“The multiracial population’s increasing size and visibility has the potential to positively shift racial attitudes,” writes a research team led by Duke University psychologist Sarah E. Gaither. “People may be more comfortable talking about race with a biracial individual, compared with other racial minorities.”
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